this letter is kind of heavy. just figured i'd give you a heads up.
today marks one month till your surgery. the surgery that i've had almost 6 months to fester about and become totally terrified of and have to convince myself every day that you're not going to die.
a couple weeks ago dr gully was asking me some questions about the surgery and i guess she sensed the hysteria that was filling my mama heart, because a few hours later i walked in to my office and saw a prescription for lexapro sitting inconspicuously on my desk=) or maybe she left it there because i asked her how quick it would start working and was it worth starting then knowing surgery was only about 6 weeks away...either way, it was much appreciated=)
however, i'm not taking it. i obviously believe medicine absolutely has its place, but i sensed God trying to teach me something bigger about trusting Him. without lexapro, in this case. (i cannot emphasize enough how i am actually a huge supporter of anti-anxiety or anti-depressant medicine!!! it is a literal life-saver in so many cases!!! i feel a great need to get that point across...)
but nikki moved in and i love and respect and value her more than i can possibly describe, and a conversation we had last week was worth more than any medicine or any therapy session i could ever have...
it was one of my worst days in terms of worrying about the surgery. i was explaining to her how i really am just afraid that you won't live. i also explained how yes, it's a big complex surgery, but really i have no reason to think that you would die. she asked if there's any reason to be extra-concerned with this surgery as compared with the others, and there's not. your surgeon has said that it's definitely a big surgery, but he's given no indication that we should be more concerned this time. and then nikki gently reminded me (she knows me well and she knew i could handle a comment like this) that there's just as much of a chance of you dying in a car accident today as there would be as a result of the surgery next month. that sounds harsh i guess (and she kinda hesitated and said "i hope this doesn't make your anxiety worse" before she said it) but it absolutely made me feel better. it made me feel like the surgery is just another day. which of course, it's not. and i don't know if i can explain it quite right, but it really did make me feel so much better. like there's no point in me getting all hyped up about this one particular thing. there are all kinds of uncontrollable factors that we face every day. the ultimate truth is that God loves us and that we are on this earth for Him. He knows everything that will take place. He is for our good, through His glory, and He is trustworthy. every day. whether that day be filled with a walk to the park or a scary invasive surgery...
so part of my preparation for surgery and dealing with my fear of you dying is to remind myself that heaven is the best. and Jesus is taking good care of you. i don't honestly think you'll die. but i'm so afraid of it. it seemed like from the time we found out you were sick when i was 17 weeks pregnant, until we finally believed that you were gonna be ok however many months after you were born, all i did was remind myself that God loves you more than i ever could and that He will take the best care of you and that you would never be happier than you would be in heaven...
i never really thought "what did i do to deserve" what was happening when we found out you were sick. i knew in my heart like i know He is real that God was doing something big. much bigger than I could ever dream up myself. that didn't necessarily mean i knew that you would live, because i didn't know that. but i knew that He chose you and He chose us to bring Himself glory. it made me feel overwhelmingly humbled. so once it looked like you were going to be ok, that's when i started thinking "what did i do to deserve" to keep you. like you were the greatest gift and who am i to get to be your mother and to have you to share life with here on earth? but the blood of Jesus stood for us and therefore God sometimes gives us good things. i am rambling a little. and i can't keep up with what my mind is trying to say. but basically i am so thankful and i want to learn what God is trying to teach me and i want you to feel so loved and cherished and safe and i want to trust Him. and rest in the fact that He is good. our little journey with you has been beyond difficult, and it has taught me more than i ever imagined i could learn in 3 years, and i wouldn't trade it for the entire world. and again, if God does have in His plan to bring you to heaven sooner rather than later, my heart will be broken in ways i can't imagine ever healing. but i know He can do that too. but i sure do pray that my mind is going WAY overboard trying to prepare for the absolute worst and we have lots and lots and lots of years ahead of us and when i'm old in my bed and not doing so hot myself, you will be there to take care of me. and i am very aware that i was and am able to think this way and resist stamping my feet and screaming at heaven only by God's miraculous workings in my heart and in my head. the human in me wanted to kick and scream when i was pregnant with a sick sick baby. and i still do, sometimes. like last night, for instance, when i got an hour and a half of sleep because you couldn't stop coughing. but i've always felt Him holding me and you and daddy very close, and that's all i wanted really. it's all i want now.
"...from Him and through Him and for Him are all things. to Him be the glory forever..."
i think i keep waiting for things to settle with you and for life to get easier and a little more relaxed. to where i'm not worried about the next thing with you. we had that for a bit, and then your diaphragm re-herniated in december. and i think God is trying to teach me that it's ok if that never happens. i don't think that's life, much less the life of a follower of Jesus. again, i just need to trust Him.
i know that all of this dying talk sounds CRAZY and it makes me want to vomit just typing it and i was on the verge of tears the whole time i was talking to aunt nikki about it, but it feels healthy to say it out loud. like it's all pent up inside of me and i might explode if it keeps festering with no outlet. so thanks nikki=) i love you so much. you are one of my greatest heroes=)
sweet baby. i'm not sure how many times i'll read this over again. i definitely won't read it on my bad days. the talk of you and dying in the same sentence makes me feel like my world is falling apart, but i wanted to tell you these things. partly so you'll know me. and partly so you might know God a little better.
i love you. you fill me with the greatest joy.